Ways to Save Money in Your Music Career
The expression it takes money to make money, is especially true when it comes to your music career. But learning how to spend your money wisely can help you save while still allowing you to do what you love for a living, make music. To help all you aspiring musicians on the road to musical and financial freedom, we’ve rounded up some tips on how you can save money and still keep the music playing.
Tame your inner party animal
Let’s face it, a lot of musicians get their start by playing in small restaurants or no-name bars. It’s easy to get swept up in the party atmosphere where before you know it, you’ve bought a round for the bar or you’ve indulged in those free drinks to the point that playing your gig the next day is about as appealing as… well, you get the picture.
Gear up wisely
Just like an auto mechanic obsessed with collecting classic cars, some gear is just obsession worthy. But try to separate what you actually need from what you’d just love to have, at least until your budget allows for it. Until then, shop around for used gear and equipment. You would be surprised at the amazing deals you can find on top quality equipment at pawn shops, yard sales, eBay, and sometimes even Amazon.
Practice at home
Take what you learn from your music career training and practice in your own recording studio at home, if possible. Your downstairs neighbor in the apartment below may not appreciate your 3 a.m. jam sessions, but if you have an area in your home that could work, you’ll save a ton of money in studio time. If you can score some great equipment like a two-channel interface with solid preamps and a quality mic., then all you need is a decent computer.
Get to know your equipment inside and out
You may be able to play like Hendrix and sing like John Legend, but if your amp stops working or your mic. blows out, being able to do basic maintenance and repairs is going to save you big time! Some things you’ll likely have to seek outside help with but get to know your gear and how to maintain it and it’s a win – win situation.
Become a bean counter
You may not be at the point where you need to hire a professional accountant, but it’s important to keep track of your expenses and income. Don’t throw away receipts. The better you get at monitoring every nickel and dime that goes out or comes in, the more you’ll be able to control your spending habits while also making the most of deductible expenses at tax time.
Be strategic about your hired help
This is a big one. A lot of musicians think they need to hire a publicist, a photographer and a marketing team to get anywhere. At some point, that may be true but make the most of your network connections and barter where you can. If your friend is a professional photographer with a kid who wants to learn the guitar or piano, offer a trade of services. Learn the business as much as you can on your own before you hire a publicist or other professional to help you manage your career. Consider what they can do for you that you cannot do for yourself. Weigh the cost versus the reward and go from there. Make sure you establish clear goals and guidelines for what you expect from their services in order to get your money’s worth.
Being strategic in your spending while you build your musical career won’t just save you money, it will help you learn how to better navigate the music industry and set you up for success! If you’d like to learn more about careers in the music industry, broadcasting, and more, check out the programs at International College of Broadcasting(ICB). At ICB, students are learning the skills they need to launch careers in audio engineering, broadcasting, multimedia production and more! Contact us today for more information or to schedule a campus tour.